Mahima Chaudhry (born Ritu Chaudhry) is an Indian actress and a former model who appears in Bollywood films. She made her acting debut in the 1997 film Pardes, for which she won the Filmfare Award for Best Female Debut.Chaudhry was born Ritu Chaudhry in Darjeeling to a Jat father and a Nepali-origin mother from Darjeeling. She attended Dow Hill in Kurseong till class X and later moved to Loreto College in Darjeeling. Initially in the 1990s, she appeared in TV ads of which most famous was for Pepsi with Aamir Khan and Aishwarya Rai. She was a VJ on music channels where she was noticed by Subhash Ghai. Ghai gave her a break in the movie Pardes, which was released in 1997. She won the Filmfare award for best debut for this movie.
During her acting career, Chaudhry has played a variety of roles, starting with a village girl in Pardes (1997). Her other roles were in Daag: The Fire (1999), where she played a dual role; in Pyaar Koi Khel Nahin (1999) she played a widow forced to marry her brother-in-law; in Dhadkan (2000) she is a loving friend of a man who is madly in love with another woman; in Deewane she plays a singer in love with a thief; in Kurukshetra she plays the stubborn wife of a police officer; in Lajja she plays a young bride forced to fight dowry; in Yeh Teraa Ghar Yeh Meraa Ghar (2001) she plays a stubborn tenant who will not give up her home at any cost; in Om Jai Jagadish she is the loving homemaker; in Dil Hai Tumhaara she is the sister who would do anything for her sister’s happiness; in Dobara she is the frustrated housewife; in The Film she is a desperate struggling screenwriter; in Zameer: The Fire Within she’s a paralytic dancer, in Film Star she is an uptight arrogant fading actress; in Home Delivery (2005) she’s a South Indian superstar; and in Souten: The Other Woman (2006) she plays a desperate housewife who has an affair with her stepdaughter’s boyfriend.
Next to doing many films, she has worked with talented actresses, including Kajol, Shilpa Shetty, Amisha Patel, Urmila Matondkar, Manisha Koirala, Raveena Tandon, Rekha, Preity Zinta, Tabu, Padmini Kolhapure, and Hema Malini. When she was asked about this, she responded by saying that she enjoyed working with other actresses, and she expressed her opinion to work with Juhi Chawla, her favorite actress.